Participate

We are not currently accepting new applications for the Fibromyalgia Floatation Project, and we will be winding down data collection of the project soon.

We plan on having the data analyzed by the end of this year, and we will be sending out updates as soon as we have information in to report on.

The Project, Summarized

The Fibromyalgia Flotation Project (FFP) has been created to document the efficacy of flotation REST as a treatment for people suffering from fibromyalgia. The International Flotation Research Group, an informal group of scientists and entrepreneurs interested in Flotation REST, organized this research endeavor. FFP is a voluntary, international effort. No remuneration or profit is received by any of the organizers.

The first study completed by the FFP was presented at the Float Summit 2012 in Gothenburg Sweden. The results of that study provided compelling evidence that flotation REST can greatly improve the lives of people with fibromyalgia by significantly decreasing their pain, muscle tension, anxiety and stress. It also significantly increased freedom of movement, energy, mood and quality of sleep. Most of these improvements showed longer-term relief as the participants floated repeatedly. This initial study had participants float once a week for three weeks but case studies suggested that extended use of flotation REST can reduce fibromyalgia symptoms to near zero. It was decided to explore the longer-term possibilities by creating a longer study.

For this study the Fibromyalgia Flotation Project is utilizing a novel approach to collecting clinical data by using this website to recruit participants and float centers, and to gather data for analysis.

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About Floating

Flotation REST is a form of Reduced Environmental Stimulation Therapy (REST) that uses a shallow pool of heavy water about the size of a large bed. The water is made heavy by super- saturating it with Epsom Salt (MgSO4) to the point that a person floats on his or her back effortlessly on the surface of the water like a cork.

The water is heated to skin temperature and the pool is enclosed in a lightproof, soundproof environment. This device, invented by Dr. John C Lilly, effectively removes external stimulation and creates a neutral environment that gives the feeling that one is floating comfortably in space.

In using this type of therapy one is given a private room with a shower where one can disrobe, shower, and step into the pool enclosure. After sitting in the water and lying back to float on the surface, one can then turn out the lights. The reduced stimulation encountered in the flotation pool refocuses the individual’s attention to internal stimuli.

About Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia is a disorder characterized by widespread musculoskeletal pain, described as a constant dull ache, typically arising from muscles. It effects 2% of general population and women are much more likely to develop it than are men by a ratio of 9:1. It is a devastating and often unpredictable condition that causes dreadful pain and impacts life by interfering with the ability to do the simplest things.

While fibromyalgia is not well understood, current thinking is that it is the result of central augmentation of pain sensitivity, either triggered by a traumatic event or developing gradually. In addition, it has been suggested that sufferers of fibromyalgia have a magnesium deficiency caused by stress and lack of restful sleep that subsequently triggers nerves to respond to even minor stimuli (London, 2007).

The Fibromyalgia Flotation Project selected Fibromyalgia for study because the characteristics and symptoms of this disorder correspond closely with conditions that were reported to benefit in prior flotation REST studies.